Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Pistol Annies Aim for the Top

By Deborah Evans Price
© 2011 CMA Close Up® News Service / Country Music Association®, Inc.
From the Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings supergroup The Highwaymen to Emmylou Harris, Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt's famed Trio, friendship and creative chemistry have inspired some of Country Music's most successful collaborations. Debuting with their chart-topping album, Hell on Heels, The Pistol Annies is the latest group of distinctive personalities to forge an enigmatic new act.
“We all have something to say as individual women and as individual artists,” Miranda Lambert said of herself, Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley. “You put all three opinions together and all three lifestyles and what we’ve all been through, and it just felt like that we were saying something that most people think and don’t actually say. I’m like that in my solo career. I take risks and I’m honest in my music and we just carried it out with this Pistol Annies project.”
“All three of us have different influences, but they all three have the same characteristic—honesty,” Monroe added. “Miranda loves Merle (Haggard). I love Dolly and Angaleena loves Loretta. We’re all very much inspired by the three of them. If you go back and listen to their records, you can relate to what they’re talking about.”
Although record companies sometimes encourage artists into collaborations that look commercially promising, that was not the case with The Pistol Annies. “Miranda and I have known each other for seven years,” said Monroe. “One night we were at her house and I asked if she’d ever heard of Angaleena Presley. I’d written with her a few times in Nashville. She said she hadn’t, so I went and got my computer and started playing her some stuff. She flipped out. She said, ‘That’s the girl! That’s our missing link!’ It fell together as easy as that.”
Presley said the collaboration felt natural from the beginning. “We sat down and wrote these songs and we didn’t overthink it,” she said. “We didn’t have any method to the madness. It’s just songs from three different girls’ perspectives and I guess a lot of people can relate to it.”
“The chemistry was there from the very beginning,” Monroe added. “We just started writing songs. We just sat down and were inspired. That’s how it happened. We weren’t trying for anything. We were just looking to write real songs about real things.”
Before teaming with the Annies, Monroe had released a digital album, Satisfied, on Columbia Nashville in 2009. Presley has recorded an unreleased album and is looking for a deal. Lambert, of course, is an established headliner with multiple hits under her belt, including 2010 CMA Song of the Year “The House That Built Me” (written by Tom Douglas and Allen Shamblin).
The Pistol Annies’ album, Hell on Heels, was released in August, two months ahead of Lambert’s fourth album, Four the Record. When asked if she was concerned about how their debut might affect her latest solo outing, Lambert responded, “That did cross my mind, but I thought if it (Pistol Annies) was that organic and felt that right, then it had to be right. The music came so easily to us three, and the chemistry that we had made me realize that I needed to put my hesitation aside and let the music lead and just see what happens.”
The result was a No. 1 album. Hell on Heels was initially a digital-only release, and the demand from fans caught the label by surprise. When brick-and-mortar retailers began clamoring for physical copies, Sony Music Nashville rushed to oblige. Lambert said the trio was taking a little vacation in Mexico to celebrate the album’s release when they received word that it might debut at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart. “It kind of shocked me to be honest,” she said, “because we didn’t have product. It was just digital.”
“The great thing about The Pistol Annies project is it came from a very musical place,” said Gary Overton, Chairman/CEO, Sony Music Nashville, noting that Lambert’s manager Marion Kraft first mentioned the project to him. Intrigued, he asked to hear music and the trio came by to play some songs live. “We first talked about doing four sides, but the music kept flowing. It was cool and there was a sound, so we ended up making a whole record. Then we said, ‘Well, there’s really not stuff on here that we thought was immediate go-to-radio, so let’s put it online and see what’s out there.’ And it was like bang, a No. 1 Country album. It just shows when there is great music and great artistry, people will find it.”
Overton noted The Pistol Annies album has further enhanced Lambert’s profile in the industry. “I think a lot of the industry has really gained a huge appreciation for Miranda,” he said. “At a very tough time in our business, she scanned 1.4 million on the Revolution album, which is very difficult to do right now. But in the meantime, she wrote a new record and did this side project, which is a No.1 Country record. I think a lot of people gained even more respect for her artistry.”
Working on the project was an enjoyable process, and in that spirit the trio adopted pet names, dubbing themselves Lone Star Annie (Lambert), Hippie Annie (Monroe) and Holler Annie (Presley). The only outside writer who contributed to the album was Lambert’s husband, Blake Shelton, who co-wrote on “Family Feud” and earned the nickname Pistol Andy.
“The girls had come to our house because we wanted to spend some time together, pick out the songs and to maybe write some more,” Lambert recalled. “We were sitting at the house and Blake had cooked us dinner. None of us are great guitar players. We have different styles, but Blake was there and he’s such a great guitar player, so we handed him a guitar and said, ‘Play something. We want to write a song.’ He ended up working up this really cool melody. We just wrote it together, all four of us, so he snuck one in on it.”
The album boasts a diverse cache of songs from the sassy “Bad Example” (Lambert and Monroe) and humorous “The Hunter’s Wife” (Presley) to “Beige” (Lambert and Monroe), a poignant tale of unplanned pregnancy. “You’re gonna laugh. You’re gonna cry and you’re probably gonna give your husband a good talking to,” Presley said, describing the contents of the album.
The title track, “Hell on Heels,” written by the trio, captures their feisty spirit. “It just felt like that was, in a nutshell, what we’re about. It’s a catchy title and catchy phrase,” said Lambert. “It makes people go, ‘Why didn’t I think of that?’ I just feel like it encompasses everything that The Pistol Annies are.”
The album also includes more somber fare such as “Housewife’s Prayer,” which Presley began writing when she was going through a divorce. “I was real broke, real depressed, desperate and didn’t know what I was going to do,” she said. “I thought about burning my house down, taking the money, getting me and my little boy an apartment and having a new start. But instead of doing that, I picked up my guitar and started writing a song about it. I played it for the girls and they helped me finish it.
“I like ‘Housewife’s Prayer,’” Presley continued, “because it represents a time in my life that was one of the hardest times I ever had and it reminds me that I had the strength to get through it. It reminds me to make better choices and not go back.”
“Lemon Drop” is also a slice of Presley’s life. “That’s a true story,” said Presley. “I was going home to Kentucky and my car broke down. I pulled over and saw my muffler had come halfway off. So I opened the trunk of my car, clipped a guitar string off, tied it on, drove on home and then drove back to Nashville. I drove around a while with my muffler tied up with a guitar string, so that’s where that idea came from. That whole song is what my life was then, trying to make it, struggling and keeping the faith.”
“Boys from the South” originated with Lambert. “I was driving home from the airport real late one night, trying to keep myself awake,” Lambert recalls. “I was going from Texas to Oklahoma and I was thinking, ‘Man, I love where I live, going home to Blake, my cute Southern boy waiting at home on me.’ I just thought it would be a cute song.”
Fans got a chance to see The Pistol Annies live when they opened dates on Lambert’s 2011 tour, and there are plans for more shows. Lambert is hoping that exposure in Pistol Annies will fuel the solo careers of her two pals. “I just want the world to hear these people,” she said of Presley and Monroe. “They need to be out there because they are great. I hope that this helps to build their individual careers as artists and they can go and do their own things, release their own albums and will always still come back and do Pistol Annies stuff. I just hope that the world hears us together and hears us individually.”
At press time, Monroe was working on her Warner Bros. debut and Presley was looking for a deal. “I’ve been in Nashville eight years and I don’t know how many times I’ve been told I’m too country for Country,” she said. “I did one record with (producers) Frank Liddell and Mike Wrucke. People loved it, but people were scared of it. We’re still shopping it, but I have complete faith that we’ll get it out there. If you liked The Pistol Annies, you’re gonna like Angaleena Presley. I hope that The Pistol Annies sets a precedent for me and Ashley and every other artist who is writing songs from their heart and can’t find a place for them.”
All three women agree that they plan to make music as The Pistol Annies for a long time. “One of our goals is for each of us to have our own tours and to stop every month and do a Pistol Annies reunion,” said Lambert. “We’re hoping to be making music together until we can’t sing no more.”
On the Web:

Description: Macintosh HD:Users:erinburr:Desktop:EYB - 2011 ACA_Tom Donahue_FOX.jpg
Eli Young Band performs during the 2nd Annual American Country Awards in Las Vegas.
Pictured (L-R): James YoungMike EliChris Thompson and Jon Jones 
Photo Credit: Tom Donahue/FOX
Nashville, Tennessee (December 13, 2011) – The Eli Young Band will end a monumental year with several accolades thanks to their breakout hit, “Crazy Girl.” Billboard has announced the record-breaker as the #1 Country Song of the Year, based on 2011 audience impressions. Just last month, “Crazy Girl,” topped both Country Radio Charts and the digital single certified platinum for sales in excess of 1 million after selling over 30,000 copies a week, every week, for months on end.
Since emerging on the charts, “Crazy Girl” has been synonymous with the number one. The song made its debut at #1 on the iTunes Country Albums Chart and was #1 most added at Billboard while the video claimed the #1 spot on – all in just one week! The song is the band’s second Top 10 hit and their first #1. “Crazy Girl” is the lead single from their first album on Republic Nashville, LIFE AT BEST. The album debuted at #3 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart; #6 on the Billboard 200; #1 on the iTunes Country Albums Chart and #2 on the iTunes All Genre Chart.
The Eli Young Band’s success has garnered National television appearances on both the Late Show With David Letterman and the 2nd Annual American Country Awards (FOX). New audiences have also enlisted several new fans, as evident with the “Crazy Girl” video tracking nearly 8 million views on YouTube alone.
While EYB spent the latter part of the year on Dierks Bentley’s Cold Cans And Country Tour, they are headliners in their own right with an established ticket-selling fanbase. EYB hit new heights on the touring front this year selling out 94% of all headlining shows from coast to coast from selling 24,000+ in Dallas to packing venues in California, Minnesota, Rhode Island and in between – even during first-ever visits to the markets.
In 2012, EYB will introduce fans and Country radio to their follow-up single, “Even If It Breaks Your Heart,” whose message parallels the band’s own journey.
ABOUT REPUBLIC NASHVILLE: In May 2009 Scott Borchetta, President and CEO of the Big Machine Label Group and Monte Lipman, President and CEO of Universal Republic, announced the formation of its new label partnership – Republic Nashville. Former Capitol Records Promotion executive Jimmy Harnen serves as President of the label. The imprint is headquartered on Music Row and utilizes the combined resources of Big Machine and Universal Republic Records. The two companies first joined forces in 2007 to propel Country Superstar Taylor Swift. Republic Nashville's artist roster includes Grammy-winning, multi-platinum superstar Martina McBride; Grammy-nominated, Triple-Platinum sensations The Band Perry; Platinum Eli Young Band and one-to-watch Sunny Sweeney.

Lynyrd Skynyrd Celebrates Grand Opening of Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ & Beer in Las Vegas

Rickey Medlocke, Johnny Van Zant and Gary Rossington slice into a slab of their signature brisket at the new Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ & Beer at Excalibur Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.


The grand opening of Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ & Beer ( wouldn't have been complete without Lynyrd Skynyrd rockin' the house as they opened their first venue at Excalibur Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas on Thursday, Dec. 8.

Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ & Beer serves mouthwatering pork and beef ribs, brisket, chicken and signature "regular" and jalapeno cheese sausage. Open daily for lunch and dinner, the new 8,000-square-foot restaurant and bar transforms into a high-energy rock club every night with great music and entertainment. The staff is part of the action – hot bartenders and servers encourage guests to have a great time - leading riotous sing-alongs to classic rock songs.
The cuisine is served "weigh and pay" style, with an array of delicious side dishes inspired by the Lone Star State including cheddar cheese grit fries, hush puppies, mom's baked beans, corn succotash, cole slaw and potato salad. Dessert selections include white chocolate bread pudding served with Jack Daniel's caramel sauce, Blue Bell ice cream, seasonal cobbler and more. The band members themselves have a few favorites. For lead singer, Johnny Van Zant, it's the mac & cheese, while guitarist Rickey Medlocke says he "can't get enough of the pecan pie."
Designed to capture the spirit of the band's "Hell House," the walls are made of authentic 150-year old barnyard wood, with concrete floors and aged brick completing the downhome feel of the space. The tables are made from floors of historic grain barns and the surface marks are hoof marks from many generations of stock animals. The tabletops are made of rough-faced old growth Doug fir from pre-World War II era from historic sites including a 1927 Brentwood house and a Los Angeles church.
The food itself is of legendary status, with a menu developed in partnership with Kreuz Market, a 111-year-old Lockhart, Tex. institution. The barbecue at Kreuz Market has consistently been named the best in the country.   
Las Vegas-based Michael Frey and Craig Gilbert of Drive This! Entertainment came together with Lynyrd Skynyrd to develop Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ & Beer, a concept they plan to expand into other cities.
Drive This! Entertainment also owns and operates American Burger Works at Excalibur, Tacos & Tequila at Luxor Hotel and Casino, RHUMBAR at The Mirage and Casa Fuente in the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace.
Twitter: @lynyrdskynyrdlv,
SOURCE Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ & Beer
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Tony Bennett: Duets II, Behind the Scenes of the Legendary Singer's History-Making Number One Album, on THIRTEEN's Great Performances Friday, January 27 at 9 p.m. on PBS


Lady Gaga, John Mayer, Michael Buble, k.d. lang, Aretha Franklin, Sheryl Crow, Willie Nelson, Queen Latifah, Norah Jones, Josh Groban, Natalie Cole, Andrea Bocelli, Faith Hill, Alejandro Sanz, Carrie Underwood and Amy Winehouse join Bennett in the studio
NEW YORK, Dec. 27, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Tony Bennett made music history with the Grammy-nominated CD Duets II when it debuted at the top of the Billboard Album charts, making Bennett the oldest vocal artist ever to achieve the number one spot.  Recently nominated for three Grammys, including Best Traditional Pop Vocal, Best Pop Duo/Group Performance, and Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s), the critically acclaimed album followed the 85-year-old singer's Grammy-winning 2006 Duets CD, which had, in turn, been released in honor of his 80th birthday. 

Tony Bennett: Duets II , a presentation of THIRTEEN's Great Performances, features the singer's greatest hits, performed by Bennett and today's biggest stars, including John Mayer, Michael Buble, k.d. lang, Sheryl Crow, Willie Nelson, Queen Latifah, Norah Jones, Josh Groban, Faith Hill, Alejandro Sanz, Carrie Underwood and more.
The sessions, filmed to capture the magic of these performers singing with the master of the Great American Songbook, airs on Friday, January 27, 2012, at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings).
Great Performances is a production of THIRTEEN for WNET, one of America's most prolific and respected public media providers. For nearly 50 years, WNET has been producing and broadcasting national and local arts programming to the New York community.
The album took more than six months to record, with each track recorded face-to-face with his singer partners in studios around the world, from LA to Nashville to London.  Among the many highlights is Amy Winehouse's last recorded track ("Body and Soul"), which was produced in London's famous Abbey Road Studios in March.  Other tracks were recorded in New York in late July: the Richard Rodgers-Lorenz Hart classic, "The Lady Is a Tramp," with Lady Gaga, and the Alan and Marilyn Bergman classic, "How Do You Keep the Music Playing," with Aretha Franklin , and "Stranger in Paradise," with Andrea Bocelli , recorded at the singer's Italian home (see full track listing below). 
The CD received kudos from all quarters. The Wall Street Journal noted that the singer was "…constantly reaffirming his position as pop music's greatest living patriarch," and Associated Press observed, "Tony Bennett is as timeless as the songs he sings on 'Duets II.'"
The musical segments are highlighted by insights on the process from the performers, making for an up-close look at one of the year's most celebrated recordings. The sessions were filmed by Oscar-winning cinematographer Dion Beebe ("Chicago," "Memoirs of a Geisha," "Collateral"), providing a personal, behind-the-scenes look at Bennett's latest collaborations and his artistic approach with each song.
Entering his seventh decade as a recording artist with more than 100 albums and 15 Grammy Awards including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, Bennett has earned his legendary status many times over.  He remains the Columbia recording artist with the greatest longevity at the label.  His 2007 primetime special, "Tony Bennett:  An American Classic," won seven Emmy Awards and was directed by Academy Award winner Rob Marshall
He has performed for Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Carter, Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Clinton, George W. Bush and Obama.  He also worked with and marched alongside Martin Luther King in his 1965 civil rights march and was honored with the Martin Luther King's Salute to Greatness Award.
In addition to performing, he is a visual artist as well, with three of his original paintings featured in the permanent collection at the Smithsonian, including his portraits of Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington.  His humanitarian efforts are renowned, and the United Nations honored him with their Humanitarian Award in 2007. 
He has published three books — his autobiography, The Good Life, and two collections of his paintings, Tony Bennett: What My Heart Has Seen and Tony Bennett in the Studio: A Life of Art and Music.  Bennett founded, in association with the Department of Education in New York City, the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts — a public arts high school in his hometown of Astoria, Queens. With his wife, Susan, he established Exploring the Arts, a charitable organization that supports arts education in NYC public high schools.  Exploring the Arts supports 14 public high schools throughout New York City.
In the fall of 2007, a documentary of Bennett's life and career, produced by Clint Eastwood, "Tony Bennett: The Music Never Ends," aired on THIRTEEN's American Masters on PBS.
The full song program follows:
"The Lady Is a Tramp" (Lady Gaga)
"One for My Baby (And One More for the Road)" (John Mayer)
"Body and Soul" (Amy Winehouse)
"Don't Get Around Much Anymore" (Michael Buble)
"Blue Velvet" (k.d. lang)
"How Do You Keep the Music Playing" (Aretha Franklin)
"The Girl I Love" (Sheryl Crow)
"On the Sunny Side of the Street" (Willie Nelson)
"Who Can I Turn To (When Nobody Needs Me)" (Queen Latifah)
"Speak Low" (Norah Jones)
"This Is All I Ask" (Josh Groban)
"Watch What Happens" (Natalie Cole)
"Stranger in Paradise" (Andrea Bocelli)
"The Way You Look Tonight" (Faith Hill)
"Yesterday I Heard the Rain" (Alejandro Sanz)
"It Had to Be You" (Carrie Underwood)
Great Performances is funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, Vivian Milstein, the LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust, the Starr Foundation, the Filomen M. D'Agostino Foundation, the Philip and Janice Levin Foundation, public television viewers, and PBS. 
Tony Bennett: Duets II is produced by RPM TV Productions, Inc. For Great Performances , Bill O'Donnell is series producer; David Horn is executive producer.
Visit Great Performances Online at for additional information about this and other programs.

Bonerama comes to Old Rock House

w/ Metrobones
Sunday, February 12
Doors 7pm Show 8pm
$15 Flat  All Ages
**On-Sale Wed. 1/4 @5pm

Even in a city that doesn’t play by the rules, New Orleans’ Bonerama is something different. They can evoke vintage funk, classic rock and free improvisation in the same set; maybe even the same song. Bonerama has been repeatedly recognized by Rolling Stone, hailed as “the ultimate in brass balls” (2005) and praised for their “…crushing ensemble riffing, human-feedback shrieks and wah-wah growls” (2007). Bonerama carries the brass-band concept to places unknown; what other brass band could snag an honor for “Best Rock Band” (Big Easy Awards 2007)? As cofounder Mark Mullins puts it, “We thought we could expand what a New Orleans brass band could do. Bands like Dirty Dozen started the “anything goes” concept, bringing in the guitars and the drum kit and using the sousaphone like a bass guitar. We thought we could push things a little further.”

Thursday, December 22, 2011



 R&B artists KEM and Joe share the love with comedian Rickey Smiley at Chaifetz (SHAY-fetz) Arena at Saint Louis University during their Love & Laughter Tour Valentine’s show on Saturday, February 11 at 8 p.m.

Tickets are $51, $61, and $71 and go on-sale on Saturday, December 17 at 10 a.m. at, charge by phone at 314-534-1111 and the Chaifetz Arena Box Office.  Ticket prices will increase $3 the day of the show.

Nashville-born, Detroit-based singer/songwriter/musician/producer KEM is a smooth, spiritually-oriented R&B artist inspired by the likes of Stevie Wonder, Steely Dan and Grover Washington Jr. His self-released debut, Kemistry, featured the #1 R&B hit “Love Calls” and was certified Gold.  His sophomore effort, Album II, included the hits “I Can’t Stop Loving You” and “Find Your Way (Back in My Life)” and yielded a Billboard Music Award for Top R&B Single of the Year.  KEM’s 2010 release Intimacy: Album III peaked at the #2 spot on both the Billboard Top 200 and Billboard Top Hip-Hop / R&B charts and earned him two Grammy nominations for Best R&B Male Performance and Best R&B Song (“Why Would You Stay”).

R&B singer-songwriter Joe has received seven Grammy nominations throughout his career including nods for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance and Best R&B Album.  His ninth album The Good, the Bad, the Sexy was released in October and reached #8 in the Billboard Top 200 chart.  Joe’s singles “Thank God I Found You” and “Stutter (remix)” both reached #1 on the Billboard’s Hot 100 chart.   Joe’s last performance in St. Louis came prior to the historic Game 6 of the 2011 World Series when he sang the National Anthem at Busch Stadium.

Hosting the evening is one of the hottest radio personalities and comedians in the country, Rickey Smiley.  Best known for his years as host of BET’s “ComicView,” Smiley is respected in the comedy circuit as a clean comedian. For sixteen years, he has built his unique and diverse characters - church bulletin reader, Bernice, and the lack-there-of motivational speaker, Coach McClainy, Ebony, Head Crack, Gary, Rock T and Darrius Bradford among others. These characters have influenced Smiley to release five different comedic albums including the Prank Phone Calls series and Off The Hook.

Madonna and Live Nation Entertainment Confirm Three Album Licensing Deal With Interscope Records

Madonna will have a new album out in late March, it was officially confirmed today by Interscope Records. In one component of a very broad plan developed by long time manager Guy Oseary and Live Nation Entertainment, the Material Girl has signed a three album deal with Interscope Records.  The new album, her first in five years, has been completed.  "Gimme All Your Luvin", the first single from the album will be released the last week in January prior to her upcoming Bridgestone Halftime Superbowl appearance on February 5th. 
In 2007, Madonna signed a multi faceted deal with Live Nation that includes new studio albums, touring, merchandising, fan club/website, DVD's, music-related television and film projects and associated sponsorship agreements. "We look forward to a great partnership," commented Live Nation Entertainment's Chairman of Global Music & CEO, Global Touring Arthur Fogel. Oseary was equally enthusiastic: "We couldn't be happier to work with Jimmy Iovine, Lucian Grainge (Chairman & CEO, Universal Music Group) and the entire Interscope team. We anticipate a very bright future at our new home."  Added Jimmy Iovine, Chairman of Interscope Geffen A&M.  "Very rarely does an opportunity like this come around. We would like to thank Madonna, Guy and Live Nation for their belief in us." 
In other Madonna news, her upcoming film, "W.E." which she directed and co-wrote is scheduled for a wide release on February 3rd. 
Over the course of her extraordinary three decade career, Madonna has sold over 300 million albums and holds the record for the most successful tour by a solo artist in history. She is a nine time Grammy winning singer, songwriter, producer and is a Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee. Her last CD "Hard Candy" debuted at No. 1 in 27 countries including the US, UK, Canada, France and Australia.
INTERSCOPE GEFFEN A&M: Combining the legacies of three of the most influential record labels in modern music history, Interscope Geffen A&M embarked on a new tradition of musical achievement with its unification on January 1, 1999.  Headed by Chairman Jimmy Iovine, Interscope Geffen A&M is a major force in global music, developing chart-topping artists across a wide range of musical genres including rock, rap, pop and alternative. Interscope Geffen A&M is part of Universal Music Group, the world's leading music company.

SOURCE Interscope Records

 UK-­based punk band Sharks today announced their Rise Records debut album, No Gods, will be released on March 20, 2012. Sharks will also hit the road once again in the United States with Social Distortion and Frank Turner starting January 27, 2012 in Las Vegas, NV at The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino.

Produced by Brian McTernan (The Explosion, Hot Water Music, Cave In), No Gods swims between the rules and regulations of the iconoclastic chaos of punk rock and British indie music. Over the course of eleven infectious anthems, Sharks sharpen timeless melodies with an explosive edge tempered by intricate riffing and hypnotic harmonies. It's pure. It's poetic. And it's powerful.

Born in 2007, Sharks is James Mattock (vocals), Andrew J. Bayliss (guitar), Sam Lister (drums), and Tony Corrales (bass). They released their first independent EP, Shallow Waters, in 2008 and drummed up a serious buzz while playing with the likes of Gallows, The Wedding Present, and Baby Shambles. Barely old enough to drive, the group garnered critical acclaim from tastemakers such as KERRANG!, The Guardian, and NME for 2010's Show of Hands EP and incendiary performances supporting The Gaslight Anthem in the UK. In April 2011, they released The Joys of Living 2008-­-2010, a 14 songs collection of previously released tracks and two band new ones that garnered them instant acclaim. Zane Lowe praised the collection as "the sound of a band reaching that moment when they are absolutely ready," while Kerrang called them "one of the best bands around."

Unlike many of their UK predecessors the band has toured extensively in the United States, often living in their van. In the United States they have toured with Social Distortion and just this year played the entire Vans Warped Tour and recently wrapped the 2011 Alternative Press Tour. They are currently featured in the "Most Anticipated Music of 2012" issue of Alternative Press. The magazine said their music "bristles with a wonderful sense of rock 'n' roll heritage that serves as a tribute to fallen heroes such as the Clash while simultaneously molding those influences into something refreshing and contemporary."

See them for yourself. 


27th                              Las Vegas, NV           The Joint @ the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
31st                              Albuquerque, NM    Sunshine Theatre

1st                                Tucson, AZ                 Rialto Theatre
3rd                                Tempe, AZ                 The Marquee
5th                                San Luis Obispo, CA SLO Brewing Company
6th                                Reno, NV                    Knitting Factory Concert House
9th                                Santa Cruz, CA          Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium
10th                              Oakland, CA              Fox Theater
11th                              Oakland, CA              Fox Theater
13th                              Chico, CA                    Senator Theatre
14th                              Modesto, CA              Modesto Centre Plaza
15th                              Los Angeles, CA         TBA*
16th                              Ventura, CA               Majestic Ventura Theatre
17th                              Pomona, CA               Fox Theater Pomona
18th                              Pomona, CA               Fox Theater Pomona

*not part of Social Distortion tour

Sharks - It All Relates (Video)
Sharks - It All Relates (Video)
Sharks - Sweet Harness (Video)
Sharks - Sweet Harness (Video)
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The Beach Boys Announce 50th Anniversary Reunion, New Album and Tour

Legendary Band's Golden Anniversary CELEBRATION to Include a New Capitol Album and Commemorative Catalog Releases, a Major International Tour and More!

The founding members of The Beach Boys, one of the world's most legendary bands in popular music history, will reunite for a global 50th Anniversary CELEBRATION in 2012.  Beach Boys Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston, and David Marks will come together for a new studio album and commemorative catalog releases with Capitol/EMI and a 50-date international tour to begin in April with a headlining performance at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival ("Jazz Fest") as well as other exciting events to be announced. 

Brian Wilson says, "This anniversary is special to me because I miss the boys and it will be a thrill for me to make a new record and be on stage with them again."
Mike Love says, "We got together at Capitol Records and re-recorded 'Do It Again.'  Brian and I wrote that song which went to number 1 in Great Britain, Australia and elsewhere some 44 years ago.  Brian paid me a compliment saying, 'How can a guy sound that great so many years later?'  Later on, while working out some harmonies on a new song Brian had written, I got a chance to return the compliment.  It was a thrill to be around a piano again with Brian, Alan and Bruce and experience firsthand the brilliance of Cousin Brian's gift for vocal arrangements.  I am very much looking forward to David Marks joining us and thrilling with his surf guitar licks.  Music has been the unifying and harmonizing fact of life in our family since childhood.  It has been a huge blessing that we have been able to share with the world.  Wouldn't It Be Nice to Do It Again?  Absolutely!"
Al Jardine says, "The Beach Boys were recently inducted into the California Hall of Fame.  From our humble beginnings as brothers, cousins and friends, we have been honored to sing the praises of California, and I'm really excited for our fans to be able to see us again in concert on the world stage, and to celebrate our 50th anniversary together with a new studio album."
Bruce Johnston says, "I will be looking forward to singing Brian Wilson's melodies and Mike Love's lyrics once again in concert with many of the original band members, but imagine what we all could come up with vocally in a recording studio atmosphere under Brian's musical direction."
David Marks says, "I'm really looking forward to celebrating this important milestone in The Beach Boys' history with the other guys, and with Capitol Records - where it all began 50 years ago.  It means a lot to me that we can all reunite and pay tribute to the fans who have kept the music alive."
The Beach Boys have already recorded several songs for their new album, to be released in 2012 by Capitol/EMI, with more tracks to be recorded before its completion.  The as-yet-untitled album, the first to feature all of the band's surviving original members in decades, is being produced by Brian Wilson and executive produced by Mike Love.  
The Beach Boys and Capitol/EMI have also teamed up for a 50th Anniversary campaign spotlighting the band's entire catalog, with several new commemorative releases planned for 2012, including a new hits collection and a career-spanning box set.
Roger Faxon, CEO of EMI Group commented: "It's no exaggeration to say that The Beach Boys are one of the greatest and most loved bands that the world has ever produced, and true American icons.  We are incredibly proud to take this next step with them as our partnership enters its fiftieth year, and I can't wait to see the band back together doing what they do better than anyone else."
Colin Finkelstein, COO of EMI Music North America said: "We're honored to continue Capitol/EMI's historic partnership with The Beach Boys as they celebrate their fiftieth anniversary.  The Beach Boys bring the best of California's sun and surf culture to people all over the world with their music, and we're really looking forward to working with the band on the new album and commemorative catalog releases - a real CELEBRATION of fifty years!"
Quint Davis, producer/director, New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival says, "It's an honor to present the original Beach Boys reunion at Jazz Fest 2012.  Hosting the greatest artists of our era has always been the primary mission of Jazz Fest, and certainly The Beach Boys are unsurpassed as an iconic American musical and cultural institution. Every spring Jazz Fest is the number-one destination for good vibrations and fun, fun, fun; on April 27th, when The Beach Boys reunite on our biggest stage, it's going to feel like a thrilling homecoming for everyone lucky enough to be there.  We're all looking forward to experiencing the magic and the joy."
Founded in Hawthorne, California in 1961, The Beach Boys were originally comprised of the three teenaged Wilson brothers: Brian, Carl and Dennis, their cousin Mike Love, and school friend Al Jardine.  In 1962, neighbor David Marks joined the group for their first wave of hits on Capitol Records, leaving in late 1963, and in 1965, Bruce Johnston joined the band when Brian Wilson retired from touring to focus on writing and producing records for the group.  For five decades, America's first pop band to reach the 50 year milestone has recorded and performed the music that has become the world's favorite soundtrack to summer. 
The Beach Boys signed with Capitol Records in July 1962 and released their first album, Surfin' Safari, that same year. The album spent 37 weeks on the Billboard chart, launching the young group known for its shimmering vocal harmonies and relaxed California style into international stardom.  The Wilson/Love collaboration resulted in many huge international chart hits, and under Brian Wilson's musical leadership, the band's initial surf-rock focus was soon broadened to include other themes, making The Beach Boys America's preeminent band of the 1960s.
In 1966, The Beach Boys were one of the first bands to found its own record label with the launch of Brother Records, Inc. (BRI), with the band's members as its shareholders and Capitol Records as its distribution partner.  BRI continues to manage The Beach Boys' intellectual property, including the band's catalog with Capitol/EMI and other label partners, as well as its name, logos, image and likeness.
The Beach Boys continue to hold Billboard / Nielsen SoundScan's record as the top-selling American band for albums and singles, and they are also the American group with the most Billboard Top 40 chart hits (36).  'Sounds Of Summer: The Very Best Of The Beach Boys' is fast approaching triple-Platinum sales status, and 'The SMiLE Sessions,' released to worldwide critical acclaim in November, has been heralded as 2011's #1 Reissue of the Year by Rolling Stone magazine.
Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988 and recipients of The Recording Academy's Lifetime Achievement GRAMMY Award, The Beach Boys are an American institution that is iconic around the world.
The Del Fuegos at The Old Rock House
Thursday, March 1st
Doors 7pm Show 8pm
$18 Advance $20 Day of Show

After disbanding in the late 1980s, the various members of the Del Fuegos went on to lead remarkable second lives. In the New Year, however, all four original members of the acclaimed Boston quartet will come together for a 12-city tour of the Eastern Seaboard and Midwest.  The Del Fuegos are among a handful of legendary rock and roll exports from Boston, Mass. Recording alongside X, the Blasters, Los Lobos, and others for L.A. ‘s Slash Records, the Del Fuegos burned brightly through the 1980s. They played more than 200 dates a year internationally and released albums that were consistently favorites of audiences and critics alike. Even before they released their first record, Rolling Stone named them a band to watch. Touring with groups ranging from the Kinks to the Replacements to INXS, ZZ Top and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, the Del Fuegos played a style of rock and roll that knocked down the door, stole your girlfriend, and won your heart. Over six busy years, they built a reputation. The Del Fuegos handpicked the cities they remembered best from years of touring. Where the memories linger, the band is now returning. Playing the best-loved songs from their catalog and keeping a few tricks up their sleeves, a little bit of Boston is, once again, making the rounds.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Macy Gray's "What I Want For Christmas" Included in Amazon's "25 Days Of Free Holiday Music" Offer

Gray Newly Signed With 429 Records

New Album "COVERED" Scheduled for March Release

Macy Gray has recorded a song for the holidays—"What I Want For Christmas "—which will be available as a free download on as part of their "25 Days Of Free Holiday Music" campaign. From December 1st thru the 25th, Amazon will offer a free holiday song download per day. Macy's song will be available on Christmas Day, December 25th.

Macy Gray, the Grammy Award-winning soul/R&B singer has just signed with 429 Records and is gearing up for the release of her sixth full-length album. Titled "COVERED"—the album is an all new recording featuring Gray's inimitable take on pop and rock songs. Arcade Fire's "Wake Up," Radiohead's "Creep," My Chemical Romance's "Teenager" and Eurythmics "Here Comes The Rain Again" are a few of the tracks off the album forthcoming in March.
429 Records is a unit of The Savoy Label Group (SLG). SLG is the North American based division of Nippon Columbia, the oldest music company in Japan. The Savoy Label Group has evolved into a Grammy Award winning and chart topping independent music company consistently outperforming competitors in key music categories as monitored by Billboard Magazine. The Savoy Label Group is led by Steve Vining and is based in Los Angeles, CA.
SOURCE 429 Records


Together, KTVI FOX 2 and KPLR 11 are proud to announce a partnership with Peabody Opera House.

Beginning Thursday, December 22nd, the combined broadcast stations will operate a news bureau from the historic St. Louis landmark, located in the heart of downtown St. Louis. In addition to a full operating studio, the stations will provide a 24-hour view of Market Street via a roof cam, visible during station newscasts and accessible online at and

“It’s great to be attached to St. Louis history and with this arrangement, we continue to serve the St. Louis community,” said Spencer Koch, President and General Manager of KTVI FOX 2 and KPLR 11.

”We’re so thrilled to be part of this exciting and creative partnership,” said Mike McCarthy CEO of the Peabody Opera House. “The Fox 2 and KPLR 11 bureau establishes a wonderful and unique home base in the heart of the city, and offers a perfect opportunity to spotlight important happenings both inside and outside the Opera House. It’s a perfect fit for us both.”

“Our commitment to providing coverage of the Metro East and Downtown St. Louis is now enhanced with this additional studio,” said Audrey Prywitch, Vice President / News Director for FOX 2 and KPLR 11.

Two new shows at The Old Rock House

The Goddamn Gallows
Sunday, January 8th
Doors 7pm Show 8pm
$8 Advance $10 Day of Show
All Ages

Though officially Michigan-based, The Goddamn Gallows have toured relentlessly since 2007, practically living out of their van and regularly performing as many as 200 dates a year. They've supported such acts as Nekromantix, Slim Cessna's Auto Club, Mad Sin, The Legendary Shack Shakers, and even the King of Surf Guitar legend Dick Dale. They continue to rapidly grow a devoted following built on their visceral and volatile blend of multiple American music styles, and frenetic live energy -but still with just enough hardcore and punk influence to make your parents hate it. The Goddamn Gallows will soon be releasing 7 Devils, their much anticipated fourth full-length album and Farmageddon Records debut on vinyl and CD. The forthcoming album features recording veteran and lap steel extraordinaire Andy Gibson (of Hank III), as well as promising up and comer Joe Perreze of the Perreze Farm sitting in on clawhammer banjo. Additionally, the entire catalogue of The Goddamn Gallows will find its way back to the light of day by year's end, re-released and available on vinyl, CD, and digital download from Farmageddon Records.

Elephant Revival / Griffin House
The Listening Room Series
Thursday, February 23rd
Doors 7pm Show 8pm
$22 Reserved $15 General Admission
All Ages

This great Co-Headline show will feature the gifted singer-songwriter Griffin House & the incredible transcendental folk group Elephant Revival closing the show.
Young in age and conception, Elephant Revival carries a fresh sense of creativity and inspiration that is felt by people of every generation. The neo-acoustic quintet is on the cutting edge of an emerging new genre that is known as ‘Transcendental Folk”. In performance, Elephant Revival reveals hidden treasures deep within a vast repertoire of original material and a few carefully selected traditionals. In one show, the quintet can be seen delving into Scottish/Celtic fiddle tunes, original folk pieces, traditional ballads, psychedelic country, indie rock, powerful reggae grooves, 40s/50s jazz standards and an occasional hip-hop beat amongst other styles.
Griffin House was born and raised in Springfield, Ohio. His father worked in a tire shop and his mother helped place children with foster families. In high school, the athletically-gifted House landed a role in a musical and was surprised to learn that he had a natural talent for singing. House bought his first guitar for $100 from a friend, turned down a golf scholarship to Ohio University and instead went to Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and started to teach himself how to play the guitar and write songs.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011




 Multi-platinum rock band Red Hot Chili Peppers will launch the North American leg of their I'm With You World Tour in January. The 2012 arena tour will be the band's first full-scale tour of the U.S. since 2007 when they hit the road in support of 2006's Stadium Arcadium.

Red Hot Chili Peppers are currently touring Europe through mid-December in support of I'm With You, which debuted at No. 2 on Billboard's Top 200 Albums chart and No. 1 on Billboard's Rock and Alternative album charts, as well as on the Top Internet Albums and iTunes Top Alternative Albums chart. The first single "The Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie," hit the top spot at Modern Rock radio, giving the band its 12th No. 1 at the format. A second single, "Monarchy of the Roses" is currently the No. 2 greatest gainer on Mediabase's Alternative chart. 

One of the most successful acts in rock history, Red Hot Chili Peppers have sold more than 60 million albums, including five multi-platinum LPs, and won six Grammy Awards, including "Best Rock Album" for Stadium Arcadium, "Best Rock Performance By a Duo or Group" for "Dani California," "Best Rock Song" for "Scar Tissue," and "Best Hard Rock Performance With Vocal" for "Give It Away."

01/25  Charlotte, NC         Time Warner Cable Arena
01/27  Raleigh, NC             RBC Center
01/28  Columbia, SC          ColonialLife Arena
01/30  Duluth, GA              Gwinnett Arena
01/31  Greensboro, NC     Greensboro Coliseum
02/03  Memphis, TN          FedEx Forum

For the first time in a decade, ICE SKATING is returning to the heart of downtown St. Louis!
THE RINK AT MONSANTO GROVE AT PEABODY OPERA HOUSE will open Friday, November 25th at 4pm thru January 16, 2012. 
Nestled in the park directly opposite the newly re-opened Opera House (on Market Street bet 14th and 15th Streets), the specially designed rink will operate seven days a week, featuring skate rentals, music, and light food and beverage. Folks visiting the city from near and far during the holidays will now have a brand new destination for frozen winter fun, with the breathtaking Opera House as a backdrop. A host of seasonal highlights and special promotions -- including youth hockey clinics,  “Late Skates” (following all Blues Saturday night hockey games) and special offers for families attending the Opera House’s production of “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas”  -- will make this a very a one-of-a-kind setting for skaters (and spectators!) of all ages. Special rates are also available for groups and holiday entertaining. Upon opening, rink info and updates will be available at    

WHEN:    The Rink – Monsanto Grove at Peabody Opera House will officially open Friday, November 25th at 4pm thru January 16, 2012.

WHERE:    The Rink – Monsanto Grove at Peabody Opera House
        *On Market Street between 14th and 15th Streets (Schiller Park)

Hours of Operation: 
                Weekdays (other than school holidays):  4pm – 9pm
                School Holidays:  10am – 10pm
                Saturdays:  10am – 10pm
                Sundays:  Noon – 7pm

Ticket Pricing:
                $6 admission
                $4 skate rental
                Seniors:  $5.50

                                1 – 20:  $1 off admission
                                20 or more:  $2 off admission
* For more information on booking group sales and special events, please contact a Group Sales Executive at 314-622-5454.
Rink Dimensions:    85’ x 55’

Special Thanks:    Monsanto, Drury Inn, Ice Rink Events, & the City of St. Louis

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


NASHVILLE - Reigning CMA Male Vocalist of the Year Blake Shelton has invited legendary singer/songwriter Kenny Loggins to join him during a performance of the classic hit "Footloose" as the opening song for "The 45th Annual CMA Awards." 

"The 45th Annual CMA Awards," hosted by Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood, airs live from the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Wednesday, Nov. 9 (8:00-11:00 PM/ET) on the ABC Television Network. Previously announced performers for "Country Music's Biggest Night(tm)" include Jason Aldean, The Band Perry, Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Sara Evans, Faith Hill, Lady Antebellum, Miranda Lambert, Martina McBride, Scotty McCreery, Sugarland, Taylor Swift, Thompson Square, Keith Urban, Chris Young, and Zac Brown Band, plus Kenny Chesney and Grace Potter singing their hit collaboration "You and Tequila;" Vince Gill, Paisley, and Urban performing a tribute to Glen Campbell; Rascal Flatts and Natasha Bedingfield singing their current hit duet "Easy;" Lionel Richie performing select duets with Little Big Town, Rascal Flatts, and Darius Rucker; and co-hosts Paisley and Underwood in their first live televised-performance of their No. 1 song "Remind Me."    

Written by Loggins and Dean Pitchford as the title song for the motion picture of the same name, "Footloose" was a No. 1 smash hit for Loggins for three weeks in 1984. With the remake of the movie currently in theaters, Shelton is dancing up the charts with his version of the song.  

Loggins has built a successful, decades-spanning career on the foundation of his songs. He first received national attention as part of the duo Loggins & Messina with Jim Messina, achieving hits such as "Your Mama Don't Dance" and selling more than 16 million albums. As a songwriter, he wrote or co-wrote such classics as "Danny's Song" (a Top 10 hit on both the Billboard Country and Hot 100 charts for Anne Murray in 1972), "A Love Song" (also a Top 10 hit on the Billboard Country Singles chart for Murray in 1974), and "What A Fool Believes" (which hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1979 for co-writer Michael McDonald's band The Doobie Brothers). As a solo artist, Loggins wrote and/or recorded such favorites as "Whenever I Call You 'Friend'" (a duet with Stevie Nicks), "This is It," "I'm Alright," "Heart to Heart," "Meet Me Halfway," "Danger Zone," "Conviction of the Heart," "For the First Time," "House at Pooh Corner," and more.

Shelton received five CMA Awards nominations this year including Entertainer; Male Vocalist; Album for All About Tonight; and Single and Music Video of the Year, both for "Honey Bee." This feat tied him with Aldean, Paisley, and Swift as the artists who received the most CMA Awards nominations in 2011. This is the first year that Shelton has been nominated in the Entertainer and Album of the Year categories.  He has won two CMA Awards thus far in his career. In addition to Male Vocalist, he also won Musical Event of the Year in 2010 for his performance of "Hillbilly Bone" with Trace Adkins. Shelton's current album is Red River Blue, featuring the Platinum-certified digital single "Honey Bee" and his fifth consecutive No. 1 hit "God Gave Me You." In total, Shelton has racked up 10 No. 1 hits.  

"The 45th Annual CMA Awards" is a production of the Country Music Association. Robert Deaton is the Executive Producer, Paul Miller is the Director, and David Wild is the writer. The special will be shot in high definition and broadcast in 720 Progressive (720P), ABC's selected HDTV format, with 5.1 channel surround sound.